Wayne State University

Mark James Larson

Mark James Larson
Clinical Assistant Professor, Early Childhood General and Special Education Program Coordinator
239 College of Education

Office Hours: Weekly offfice advising appointments are available during Fall and Winter semesters. Please call (313) 577-0902 to schedule an appointment. Dr. Larson also provides academic advise and answers questions via email, Skype, and phone.

(313) 577-0903
(313) 577-4091 Fax

  • Ph.D. University of Washington (Seattle, Washington), 1998, Education, Special Education
  • M.Ed. University of Washington, 1982, Early Childhood Special Education
  • B.A. University of Washington, 1979, Social Welfare


Dr. Mark Larson has worked with children and their parents in a variety of educational settings (e.g., center-based community preschool/childcare, father-infant interaction programs, elementary grades). In 1996 Dr. Larson joined the faculty in Teacher Education. 


Dr. Larson is a faculty member in Teacher Education and  Program Coordinator for Early Childhood General and Special Education. He is faculty advisor in the Early Childhood General and Special Education (ZS) programs. 

Academic Interests

Assessment and instructional practices for young children, particularly those with developmental delays or disabilities within inclusive and natural settings and parent-professional partnerships to design relationship-based, educational interventions for young children.


Area Of Expertise

 Educational interventions grounded in Behavior Analysis (BA); Developmentally Appropriate Practice (DAP) for young children; and, participatory, single-case research methods.

Research Interests

 Educational interventions for young children with disabilities, particularly applied, language and social communication interventions for children that aim to increase those children's social connectedness in relationships and their engagement in general curriculum activities across natural and inclusive settings. 


Courses Taught

  • ELE 6010 Family Centered Collaboration in Early Intervention and Special Education
  • ELE 6020 Seminar In Early Childhood
  • ELE 6040 Role of Content Areas in Early Childhood Education
  • ELE 7020 Issues in Early Childhood Education
  • SED 6040 Introduction to Early Childhood Special Education

Community Engagement Activities

Dr. Larson's Service Activities Include:  

Executive Committee Member, Wayne State University, College of Education Faculty and Staff Assembly, 2010-2012, 2012-2014, 2014-2016. 


Chairperson and Member of the Michigan Interagency Coordinating Council (MICC) for Infants and Toddlers with Developmental Disabilities, 2007-2011, Office of Early Childhood Education and Family Services, Michigan Department of Education; Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act, (IDEiA, 2004) mandated state advisory body for Part C services; originally appointment by Governor John M. Engler, and then, re-approinted by Governor Jennifer M. Granholm.


President, Michigan Association of Early Childhood Teacher Educators for 2007-2009, 2009-2011; Michigan chapter of the National Association of Early Childhood Teacher Educators. Vice-President, Michigan Association of Early Childhood Teacher Educators for 2005-2007.


Ex-Officio Member of Michigan State Special Education Advisory Committee (SEAC), Office of Special Education/Early Intervention Services, Michigan Department of Education; Individual with Disabilities Improvement Act (2004) mandated state advisory body for IDEiA Part B services, representing Institutes of Higher Education Advisory Committee (IHE), 1998-2011.


Secretary, Wayne State University, College of Education Faculty and Staff Assembly: 1997-1999.




Wayne State University College of Education, Detroit Public Schools, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Pre-K Professional Development Program
2009 - 2010


Autism Collaborative Endorsement (ACE) An Online Certification Program
Shellady, S., Matthews , A., Swift, C., Anderson, A., Larson, M., & Miller, J. 2005   American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (AACTE) National Conference. Washington D.C.


Young children using graphs to build mathematical reasoning.
Larson, M.J., & Whitin, D.J.   2010 Dimensions of Early Childhood, 38(3), 15-22.
Bridges or barriers to friendships: An assessment guide for books about autism spectrum disorders.
Larson, M., Whitin, P., & Vultaggio, B.   2010 The Dragon Lode, 29(1), 29-37.
Linking national standards: A reflective process.
Elliott, S., Snyder, J., Larson, M., Bhavnagri, N., Hamilton, C., Frierson, P., Miller, A., & Windemuth, J.   2002 Journal of Early Childhood Teacher Education, 23, 1-9.
Positive behavior support for young children: A supplement to positive behavior support for all Michigan students, creating environments that assure learning.
Mueller, F., & Larson, M.   2001 Michigan Department of Education